Greg Manusky has Sealed his Fate...The Only Question is Will it be Sooner Rather than Later?
Mike Singletary the San Francisco 49ers head coach believes in loyalty, which is not a bad thing for a coach to have. The problem with loyalty is that allows for the overlooking of weaknesses as is the case of the 49ers offensively and defensively.
It's the reason why Alex Smith is believed in and why even though it looked like to most people that Smith was going to be pulled in favor of backup David Carr.
That of course did not happen and Smith came back and made plays that led to a touchdown.
Though Smith provides a good example of sticking with someone the opposite can be said for Jimmy Raye. Singletary would have preferred not to have fired Raye, but the 49ers offense wasn't going anywhere and became way too predictable that it didn't take teams very long to diagnose that the play was going to be a run.
This meant that Frank Gore struggled and had a hard time finding holes and it led to third and long situations. Those situations took a toll on the 49ers and it was the reason why under Raye the 49ers went winless with him as the offensive coordinator.
Singletary made the decision to fire Raye and although the 49ers offense has been far from impressive he has done enough to make it so teams are having a more difficult time diagnosing run and pass.
Also, the 49ers have done a good job of staying out of third and long situations. On occasion with such a young offensive line penalties and mistakes happen that do put them in those situations.
The 49ers are now 1-3 under the direction of Johnson and there have been more big plays under his directions then there were with Raye. So, the change was needed and the 49ers have responded well to the change, have been far from impressive.
After today's game against the Carolina Panthers the other coordinator that Singletary has been loyal too has had his fate sealed as well. The question is when will his firing be? Will it be sooner rather than later?
If the Panthers game was any indication he will be fired soon. Greg Manusky has been with the 49ers for over four years he was one of the few holdovers from Mike Nolan's staff when Singletary took over as the interim coach.
Manusky's defenses have been constantly exposed with the passing game even with the 49ers being one of the best at stopping the run. The problem with Manusky is that he does not blitz very often, he trusts his defense too much, he hasn't been able to mold a pass rusher, and the secondary consistently.
This game might be the last example for Manusky on why he doesn't belong as the defensive coordinator. The Panthers came in as the worst scoring team in the NFL averaging 10.4 points, the Panthers were last in total yards, last in first downs, last in passing yards, last in interceptions, last in turnovers and second to last in touchdowns.
Part of that was because Jimmy Clausen as rookie was named the starter for the three games prior to the game against the 49ers. Steve Smith the Panthers best receiver had been out with an injury as well.
Matt Moore regained his starting spot that he had at the start of the season. Today proved why the Panthers were wise to put him back as the starter.
Against the 49ers the Panthers had their best offensive game of the season. Moore had 28 completions in 41 passing attempts, threw for 308 yards, was sacked once, threw two touchdowns and was intercepted once.
The interception was returned for a touchdown by Ray McDonald it was the only mistake made by Moore all game.
Rookie David Gettis torched the 49ers secondary for eight catches for 125 yards and two touchdowns. Steve Smith wasn't actually much of a factor receiving wise but he did contribute four catches for 50 yards, and another rookie Brandon LaFell had a big game with six catches for 91 yards.
Three receivers for the Panthers combined for 18 catches, 266 yards, two touchdowns and a fumble lost.
Running wise the Panthers did not find much success as DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart combined for 33 carries and 73 yards. Williams also lost a fumble.
So, the 49ers continued the turnover woes for the Panthers with three, two fumbles and an interception. Yet, still the Panthers squeaked by with a 23-20 victory.
How were the Panthers able to score so many points? The answer is simple no pressure on Moore at all. He was virtually allowed all day long to throw and even when the 49ers came close to sacking him he made a quick decision and got rid of the ball and made the play.
The only time the 49ers really got pressure on Moore he was trying to setup a screen pass to Williams, but Ray McDonald read it perfectly, intercepted the pass and returned the interception for a touchdown.
In fact that touchdown gave the 49ers a 20-13 lead with plenty of time to go in the fourth quarter. The next series after the Panthers got the ball back the 49ers forced a punt.
With Alex Smith being injured though the offense for the 49ers just went with runs to Frank Gore as Carr wasn't trusted enough to throw the football.
The Panthers got the ball back and it looked like the 49ers defense was going to hold again and force a punt after it looked like Moore had been injured.
Panthers were forced to take a timeout as Moore was limping after being hit low by Demetric Evans, but after the timeout Moore came out and made big plays.
As the 49ers defense was playing soft coverage and was giving up the dump off passes. The Panthers went quickly down the field and because with just under six minutes left and the Panthers offense not being that good, Panthers coach John Fox took a gamble.
On fourth down instead of settling for a field goal, the Panthers went for it. Gettis was wideopen for what would have been the game tying touchdown, but somehow he dropped the ball.
The Panthers turned the ball over on downs and the 49ers got the ball back at the 16 yard line. Still with very little confidence in Carr, the 49ers tried to throw the football, and Carr was sacked.
Unable to get a first down the 49ers were again forced to punt not once but twice as there was a penalty on the punt. It truly didn't effect the field positioning as the special teams kept Smith from breaking out a big return.
Again the defense was out on the field giving up the underneath passes and Moore just picked that apart. With no pressure on him he found his receivers and in just eight plays the Panthers were in the end zone tying the game up at 20.
Carr was intercepted on the 49ers next possession and the very first play after the interception was a long pass play to LaFell for 35 yards. The play put the Panthers in field goal territory and the 49ers defense was able to stand holding the Panthers to a field goal.
It's one thing to lose against a team that has the likes of Drew Brees and Brett Favre in the fourth quarter, but when it's Moore leading the worst passing offensive in the league there's something to be said about that.
Manusky's weaknesses as a coordinator were exposed by the Panthers! Mainly the lack of a pass rush, lack of blitzing, and playing way too soft when the game was on the line.
His fate is now sealed the question remains when will Manusky be fired!